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VOR Breaking: Vestas 11th Hour Racing has lost their rig off the Falkland Islands; all crew are safe

ALICANTE, SPAIN – More carnage in the Volvo Ocean Race fleet. First there was the tragic loss of life earlier this week when SHK/Scallywag crewman John Fisher (GBR) was lost overboard. Then yesterday overall leader MAPFRE was forced to suspend racing for 13 hours at Cape Horn so they could meet their shore team to effect repairs to their mast and mainsail that otherwise would have prevented the team from continuing on Leg 7 from Auckland to Itajaí, Brazil.

Now, Vestas 11th Hour Racing, skippered by American Charlie Enright (and whose Project Manager is Mark Towill, also an American) lost their rig this (Friday) morning. Here is the full text of the Vesta 11th Hour statement on their team website:

At 15:59 UTC on 30 March 2018, Vestas 11th Hour Racing suffered a dismasting approximately 100 miles southeast of the Falkland Islands. The entire crew is safe and uninjured. The mast broke just above the first spreader but has been cut away to protect the hull from damage.

At the time of the dismasting, Vestas 11th Hour Racing was sailing in a 25-to-30 knot northerly wind with three-meter waves.

The Volvo Ocean 65 is seaworthy, and the crew is now motoring to the Falkland Islands where the team, in conjunction with the shore crew and the Volvo Ocean Race, will evaluate the necessary next steps to get the boat and crew to Itajaí, Brazil as soon as possible.

The team does not anticipate any assistance required from other teams or the MRCC, who have been notified. We will continue to provide updates as they become available.

A similar statement has been posted on the VOR website here.

Below is a video from aboard Vestas 11th Hour Racing as they were passing Cape Horn yesterday....